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Topic: Keith Devlin's Online Course
Replies: 88   Last Post: Jan 5, 2014 9:31 PM

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kirby urner

Posts: 2,007
Registered: 11/29/05
Re: Keith Devlin's Online Course
Posted: Dec 31, 2013 8:07 PM
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On Mon, Dec 30, 2013 at 5:36 PM, Robert Hansen <bob@rsccore.com> wrote:

> On Dec 30, 2013, at 12:28 PM, kirby urner <kirby.urner@GMAIL.COM> wrote:
>
> Which kids again? The ones attracted to Devlin's new class?
>
>
> Huh? You said kids in the ghetto.
>


In passing, yes, but my recommendation is that we update the curriculum
with a more "how things work" approach and include new topics (many of them
technological) for math credit.

Many students in economically disadvantaged zip codes demonstrate a hunger
for this knowledge.

South Africa seems to be moving in this direction: if you're from a
township, you want access to a tuXlab. Or maybe that trend is over too --
I haven't visited the RSA in awhile.


>
>
> Why no SQL? Because there isn?t any math.

>>
>
>> Oh come come, you know better than that. You've got union and
>> intersection, boolean filtering, unique keys. It's a lot of that same set
>> stuff they trucked out in the 60s as New Math.

>
>
> My point was that if they have stopped teaching the ?math? in math, why
> would they teach the ?SQL? in SQL? Yeah, in the 60?s, when they were
> teaching math towards students with some actual talent in the subject, they
> would have done a decent job with SQL, well, that is of course if SQL had
> even existed.
>



You are not disagreeing then, only underlining your distopian view of the
present and suggesting in some past golden age, of which you wax nostalgic,
injecting SQL would have seemed logical.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/SQL

You're right, it'd be anachronistic to imagine teaching SQL in the 1960s.


>
>> With the new PostGIS extensions, your SELECT statements are perhaps within
>> polygons i.e. you may select all street intersections (vertexes, nodes)
>> within a zip code.

>
>> In Portland, we might freely copy Tri-Met's open source version of the
>> trip routing software and study that.
>>
>> You say there's no math in plotting an optimum mixed mode (bus and bike)
>> trip across town? The bike trip planner has the option to plan for least
>> gradient i.e. longer distance but no steep hills. Any math there?
>>
>>
>> HTML5 has SQL built right in doesn't it? The basic grammar of our day,
>> what makes any web page a reality, is HTML.

>
>
> You?re breaking up.
>


Sorry, I was a bit out of date.

I remember when WC3 was promising we'd have SQL on the client side in the
browser, but the spec writers have abandoned this effort in favor of a
different API.

http://stackoverflow.com/questions/7277808/is-it-safe-to-use-html5-web-sql-database-api

>> You could say it doesn't have any math either, yet to share math notation
>> on the web you need to understand something about the DOM and JavaScript.
>> MathJax, MathML...

>
>> The picture you describe, of the state of public education, sounds rather
>> post-apocalyptic. The situation may be hopeless if you're right.

>
>
> I don?t want to think it is hopeless, but if 80% of the population doesn?t
> have talent in something, how do you ever expect the public curriculum in
> that something to ever return to its former self again? I think they will
> continue to demand that schools teach everyone algebra and schools will
> continue to oblige.
>
> But I see hope sometimes. When I see quality vocational programs emerging
> in school districts I see hope. HTML, despite your characterization, is a
> great non-mathy and creative career path. Programmers do not design the
> aesthetics of their sites anymore. Graphics designers do. Programmers also
> don?t create the gigabytes of imagery in video games. Graphics designers
> do. Scores of them. But college has to lead the change if vocational
> options are ever going to be widespread. College has to stop adding fake
> academic hurdles to every path to citizenship.
>


I'd say rather that the graphic arts are indeed "mathy".

You need coordinate systems, splines, sprites, Bezier curves... Turtle Art,
fractals.

Saying graphic arts is not mathy is like saying M.C. Escher is not mathy.
Or Penrose tiles. Or polyhedrons.


> We have scores of studies on how to teach fake calculus and fake physics to
> students that failed fake algebra, but when have you seen a study on how to
> implement a robust vocational system of education in this country? And they
> don?t even have to start from scratch, since every other country on the
> planet already does it that way. In any event, I am not holding my breath.
>
>

>> I favor more exchange programs, more mixing it up, as an antidote to
>> getting too stuck in these ruts.
>>
>> I hear in Japanese schools the kids rotate helping with food prep and
>> bring the lunches to the classrooms, learning service as well. None of
>> this going to the cafeteria nonsense or, more likely, the fast food joint
>> across the street.

>
>> Some schools build in gardening as a part of the curriculum. Public
>> schools. Here in Portland.

>
>> More experimentation, not less, is what's needed.
>>
>> That means loosening the grip of the top-down authoritarians.
>>
>> At some level my ideology makes me an ally of others NOT getting their
>> marching orders from Washington, DC.
>>
>> But "not federal" doesn't mean "not public". Rather, it means "public,
>> but under local control" and importing influences selectively, including
>> from Asia and New Zealand (given our geographic location: Cascadia).


>
> Now you?re really breaking up.
>
> You yourself have seen how in better schools (often private schools) they
> teach SQL and algebra side by side. The whole experience is honors level.
> We didn?t have ?honors? level when we went to school. What they call
> ?honors? was just ?standard? level when we went to school. Most schools
> today do not have ?honors? level curriculums anymore.
>
> Bob Hansen
>


You seem to agree that my curriculum reform proposals make sense, just we
don't happen to live in a civilization that's capable of upgrading so
drastically.

You're like Jared Diamond in 'Collapse: How Societies Choose to Fail or
Succeed', explaining why it won't happen.

Kirby


Date Subject Author
12/24/13
Read Keith Devlin's Online Course
Robert Hansen
12/24/13
Read Re: Keith Devlin's Online Course
kirby urner
12/24/13
Read Re: Keith Devlin's Online Course
Robert Hansen
12/27/13
Read Re: Keith Devlin's Online Course
kirby urner
12/29/13
Read Re: Keith Devlin's Online Course
Robert Hansen
12/29/13
Read Re: Keith Devlin's Online Course
kirby urner
12/30/13
Read Re: Keith Devlin's Online Course
Robert Hansen
12/30/13
Read Re: Keith Devlin's Online Course
kirby urner
12/30/13
Read Re: Keith Devlin's Online Course
Robert Hansen
1/1/14
Read Re: Keith Devlin's Online Course
kirby urner
1/1/14
Read Re: Keith Devlin's Online Course
Robert Hansen
1/1/14
Read Re: Keith Devlin's Online Course
kirby urner
1/1/14
Read Why Casual Programming doesn't Exist
Robert Hansen
1/2/14
Read Re: Why Casual Programming doesn't Exist
kirby urner
1/2/14
Read Re: Why Casual Programming doesn't Exist
Robert Hansen
1/5/14
Read Re: Why Casual Programming doesn't Exist
kirby urner
1/5/14
Read Re: Why Casual Programming doesn't Exist
Robert Hansen
1/5/14
Read Re: Why Casual Programming doesn't Exist
kirby urner
1/5/14
Read Re: Why Casual Programming doesn't Exist
Robert Hansen
1/5/14
Read Re: Why Casual Programming doesn't Exist
Robert Hansen
1/5/14
Read Re: Why Casual Programming doesn't Exist
kirby urner
1/5/14
Read Re: Why Casual Programming doesn't Exist
Robert Hansen
1/5/14
Read Re: Why Casual Programming doesn't Exist
kirby urner
1/5/14
Read Re: Why Casual Programming doesn't Exist
Robert Hansen
12/26/13
Read Re: Keith Devlin's Online Course
Joe Niederberger
12/29/13
Read Re: Keith Devlin's Online Course
Robert Hansen
12/28/13
Read Re: Keith Devlin's Online Course
GS Chandy
12/28/13
Read Re: Keith Devlin's Online Course
Joe Niederberger
12/30/13
Read Re: Keith Devlin's Online Course
kirby urner
12/29/13
Read Re: Keith Devlin's Online Course
GS Chandy
12/29/13
Read Re: Keith Devlin's Online Course
Robert Hansen
12/29/13
Read Re: Keith Devlin's Online Course
Robert Hansen
12/29/13
Read Re: Keith Devlin's Online Course
GS Chandy
12/29/13
Read Re: Keith Devlin's Online Course
GS Chandy
12/30/13
Read Re: Keith Devlin's Online Course
Robert Hansen
12/29/13
Read Re: Keith Devlin's Online Course
Joe Niederberger
12/30/13
Read Re: Keith Devlin's Online Course
Anna Roys
12/29/13
Read Re: Keith Devlin's Online Course
Joe Niederberger
12/30/13
Read Re: Keith Devlin's Online Course
Robert Hansen
12/29/13
Read Re: Keith Devlin's Online Course
Joe Niederberger
12/30/13
Read Re: Keith Devlin's Online Course
Robert Hansen
12/30/13
Read Re: Keith Devlin's Online Course
GS Chandy
12/31/13
Read Re: Keith Devlin's Online Course
GS Chandy
12/30/13
Read Re: Keith Devlin's Online Course
Joe Niederberger
12/30/13
Read Re: Keith Devlin's Online Course
Joe Niederberger
12/31/13
Read Re: Keith Devlin's Online Course
Robert Hansen
12/30/13
Read Re: Keith Devlin's Online Course
Joe Niederberger
12/30/13
Read Re: Keith Devlin's Online Course
Robert Hansen
1/1/14
Read Re: Keith Devlin's Online Course
Anna Roys
1/2/14
Read Re: Keith Devlin's Online Course
Robert Hansen
12/30/13
Read Re: Keith Devlin's Online Course
Joe Niederberger
12/30/13
Read Re: Keith Devlin's Online Course
Joe Niederberger
12/30/13
Read Re: Keith Devlin's Online Course
Joe Niederberger
12/31/13
Read Re: Keith Devlin's Online Course
GS Chandy
12/31/13
Read Re: Keith Devlin's Online Course
GS Chandy
12/31/13
Read Re: Keith Devlin's Online Course
GS Chandy
12/31/13
Read Re: Keith Devlin's Online Course
Joe Niederberger
12/31/13
Read Re: Keith Devlin's Online Course
Joe Niederberger
12/31/13
Read Re: Keith Devlin's Online Course
Louis Talman
1/1/14
Read Re: Keith Devlin's Online Course
Robert Hansen
1/1/14
Read Re: Keith Devlin's Online Course
GS Chandy
1/1/14
Read Re: Keith Devlin's Online Course
Robert Hansen
1/1/14
Read Re: Keith Devlin's Online Course
Louis Talman
1/1/14
Read Re: Keith Devlin's Online Course
GS Chandy
1/1/14
Read Re: Keith Devlin's Online Course
Robert Hansen
1/1/14
Read Re: Keith Devlin's Online Course
GS Chandy
1/2/14
Read Re: Keith Devlin's Online Course
GS Chandy
1/2/14
Read Re: Keith Devlin's Online Course
GS Chandy
1/2/14
Read Re: Keith Devlin's Online Course
Robert Hansen
1/2/14
Read Re: Keith Devlin's Online Course
GS Chandy
1/2/14
Read Re: Keith Devlin's Online Course
Robert Hansen
1/2/14
Read Re: Keith Devlin's Online Course
Louis Talman
1/3/14
Read Re: Keith Devlin's Online Course
Robert Hansen
1/3/14
Read Re: Keith Devlin's Online Course
Louis Talman
1/2/14
Read Re: Keith Devlin's Online Course
GS Chandy
1/2/14
Read Re: Keith Devlin's Online Course
GS Chandy
1/2/14
Read Re: Keith Devlin's Online Course
Robert Hansen
1/2/14
Read Re: Keith Devlin's Online Course
GS Chandy
1/3/14
Read Re: Keith Devlin's Online Course
Robert Hansen
1/3/14
Read Re: Keith Devlin's Online Course
GS Chandy
1/3/14
Read Re: Keith Devlin's Online Course
Robert Hansen
1/3/14
Read Re: Keith Devlin's Online Course
Robert Hansen
1/3/14
Read Re: Keith Devlin's Online Course
GS Chandy
1/4/14
Read Re: Keith Devlin's Online Course
Robert Hansen
1/4/14
Read Re: Keith Devlin's Online Course
GS Chandy
1/4/14
Read Re: Keith Devlin's Online Course
Robert Hansen
1/5/14
Read Re: Keith Devlin's Online Course
GS Chandy
1/5/14
Read Re: Keith Devlin's Online Course
Bishop, Wayne
1/5/14
Read Re: Keith Devlin's Online Course
Robert Hansen

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